Texans’ JJ Watt says kneeling during anthem not about “disrespecting” flag “you clearly haven’t been listening”

Fox News reports Houston Texans star J.J. Watt tweeted Saturday that kneeling during the national anthem is not about “disrespecting” the American flag or the military.

One person wrote, in a now-deleted tweet, that he was “pretty sure” the three-time Defensive Player of the Year would not be taking a knee, along with three American flag emojis.

Watt clapped back, responding Saturday: “Don’t speak for me”

“If you still think it’s about disrespecting the flag or our military, you clearly haven’t been listening,” Watt tweeted.

On Friday, Texans coach Bill O’Brien said he would kneel with his players if they chose to do so during the anthem.

Watt has been outspoken about the need for more understanding and justice in the nation following the death of George Floyd while in police custody in Minneapolis on May 25.

Earlier this month, he wrote a lengthy post on social media that began: “Silence is unacceptable.”

 

View this post on Instagram

 

Silence is unacceptable. I spoke on the murder of George Floyd last week, but realize that my comments may not have made their way to Instagram/Facebook and I do not want the absence of those words to imply my silence on the subject. I personally believe that a social media post can only accomplish so much. Listening, learning, understanding and asking how we can help, accomplishes much more. When I first saw the video of George Floyd’s murder, I was disgusted and upset. In no simple terms, George Floyd should be alive right now. There were many ways in which the situation could have been remedied, all of which would have prevented his death. I have never had to feel that fear for my life. I have never had to experience a situation where I felt threatened simply because of the color of my skin. I can’t sit here and pretend to know what that feels like. But I can understand and acknowledge that it’s wrong and that nobody should ever feel discriminated against because of the color of their skin. Racism is a problem and silence won’t solve it. I certainly don’t have the answers, nor do I pretend to. But I do intend to listen, learn, understand and ask how I can help.

A post shared by JJ Watt (@jjwatt) on

Cleveland Browns quarterback Baker Mayfield has indicated he will kneel during the national anthem this upcoming season.

Mayfield posted a Instagram video showing him working out and getting ready for the season.

One fan commented “Please tell Browns fans you’re not going to be kneeling this season.” Mayfield replied “pull your head out. I absolutely am.”

Per USAToday, President Donald Trump has been highly critical of this practice, saying it disrespects the flag and the country. He weighed in on Goodell’s statement late Sunday night, seemingly questioning it for giving players a blessing of sorts to protest during the anthem if they so choose.

Trump said on Twitter: “Could it be even remotely possible that in Roger Goodell’s rather interesting statement of peace and reconciliation, he was intimating that it would now be O.K. for the players to KNEEL, or not to stand, for the National Anthem, thereby disrespecting our Country & our Flag?”

June 5th, Roger Goodell released the following video: